The British Fantasy Society reviews EXILES OF KHO

David Brzeski has reviewed my novella Exiles of Kho over at the British Fantasy Society website.
From the review:

Somehow, Christopher Paul Carey manages to perfectly meld the styles of Henry Rider Haggard, Edgar Rice Burroughs and Philip José Farmer. It almost seems as if those three authors were amalgamated into one. It’s very well-written, actually somewhat better than Burroughs might have managed. It invokes the period flavour of Haggard’s prose, yet without seeming in any way dated in style. I’m really not quite sure how Carey does it.

Read the entire review here.

New story available: “With Dust Their Glittering Towers: A Fly-Leaves Story”

 About two years ago, while working on a historical novel about a prominent Baconian, I began entertaining the idea of writing a cycle of short stories centered around the idea of a secret guild of women dedicated to investigating the supernatural mysteries surrounding the life of Sir Francis Bacon. This would be based–sometimes loosely and other times with as much unwavering historical accuracy as I could wrangle–on the Ladies’ Guild of Francis St. Alban, a mostly forgotten but extremely fascinating society founded in London in 1905 by the devout Baconian Mrs. Henry Pott (aka Constance Mary Pott, not to be confused, as is sometime the case, with her daughter of the same name, who was a noted artist), who had also inspired the formation of the Bacon Society of London in 1886.

Mrs. Henry Pott (1836-1915)

My cycle of stories would take the premise that a secret guild, called the Fly-Leaves, formed much earlier than the real-life Ladies’ Guild of Francis St. Alban, and that this secret society would plumb the stranger mysteries that were too “out there” for the more traditionalist Baconians, many of whom themselves believed that Bacon was the true author of the Shakespeare plays. The stories would be written in a modern, present-tense style that would yet strive to evoke the period in which they were set, which would span the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century. “With Dust Their Glittering Towers”–which has just been released in The Many Tortures of Anthony Cardno, a charity anthology for the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life–is the first story I’ve written for the Fly-Leaves series. It features intrepid Baconian Alicia Amy Leith, whose trip to Highgate takes a turn for the weird as she explores the crumbling ruins that mark the site of Sir Francis Bacon’s death. Having been inspired by an article by the real-life Alicia Leith, I spent a lot of time researching the historical details behind this one, and then a heck of a lot of time revising and polishing it. While authors are often blind to which of their works are of merit, I’m not afraid to say I think it’s possible this is my best piece of fiction yet–though doubtless I have made some historical blunder somewhere, and I hope the present-day Baconians can forgive the tale’s more fantastic elements. Many thanks to David Herter, one of the most brilliant authors I know, and my wife, Laura, a sharp baloney detector, for being my first readers on this story. I currently count ten entries in my “Story Ideas” file for potential Fly-Leaves stories, though I don’t know if all of these will be written. The current plan is for there to be one long novella, titled “Strange Promus,” which will be set just prior to “With Dust Their Glittering Towers,” and several more short stories that I will squeeze in to my writing schedule as time permits. The hope is to eventually collect the entire Fly-Leaves cycle under one set of covers, though that’s undoubtedly getting ahead of myself! For now, the first installment, “With Dust Their Glittering Towers,” is out there for you to read if you feel so inclined. Oh, yes, and an ebook edition of The Many Tortures of Anthony Cardno is coming soon. I’ll post the relevant links when it goes live.

Sir Francis Bacon (1561-????)

New story available: “The Goddess Equation”

My story “The Goddess Equation” is now available from Meteor House in the anthology The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 4: Voyages to Strange Days, edited by Michael Croteau and with an foreword by Robert Silverberg. “The Goddess Equation” is set in the continuity of Farmer’s classic science fiction tales Night of Light, “Some Fabulous Yonder,” and “Strange Compulsion,” and features a twenty-third-century mystery investigated by Detective Raspold, known throughout the inhabited worlds as the galactic Sherlock Holmes.

The publisher’s information for the anthology is as follows:

The Worlds of Philip José Farmer 4: Voyages to Strange Days

US$ 25.00
6×9 tpb
308 pages
of 500 copies

The first three volumes in the Worlds of Philip José Farmer series focused on different facets of Farmer’s career: Volume 1 studied his disdain for literary boundaries, those between genres and even those between fiction and reality; Volume 2 featured his interest in the softer sciences, such as, sociology, anthropology, psychology, and theology, among many others; Volume 3 played around with his love of the trickster character in fiction, and his own trickster nature.

Volume 4 focuses on perhaps a more obvious topic: Philip José Farmer the classic science fiction writer! Farmer grew up on the pulps; from the 1920s through the Golden Age, Farmer was an avid reader of many of the science fiction magazines. Although many were ground-breaking, his earliest stories used familiar tropes such as interstellar travel, alien races, parallel worlds, computers, war, scientists, etc.


Foreword by Robert Silverberg
Peoria-Colored Worlds
The Case of the Curious Contradiction by Terry Bibo
Eleven Days in Springtime by François Mottier
Philip José Farmer Conquirt L’Univers Postface by Philip José Farmer
Pecon 2 Guest of Honor Speech by Philip José Farmer
Expanded Worlds
Samdroo and the Grassman by Martin Gately (The Green Odyssey)
Whiteness of the Whale by Danny Adams (The Wind-Whales of Ishmael)
Ite, Missa Est by Paul Spiteri (Father Carmody)
Antlers of Flesh by E. C. Lisic (Flesh)
The Goddess Equation by Christopher Paul Carey (Detective Raspold)
Classic Worlds
A Carmody-Raspold Chronology by Christopher Paul Carey
Letter of Discord by Philip José Farmer
For Where Your Treasure Is by Art Sippo
Moth and Rust by Philip José Farmer

Order the book now directly from Meteor House.

How did Philip José Farmer pronounce the name “Hadon” from his Ancient Opar books?

Hugo- and Nebula-award-winning author Philip José Farmer created a highly detailed fictional language and pronunciation for his Khokarsa series (also referred to as the Ancient Opar series). In these two brief audio clips, Farmer demonstrates the pronunciation of “Hadon,” the protagonist of the novels Hadon of Ancient Opar (1974) and Flight to Opar (1976). This recording is from the Edgar Rice Burroughs Dum-Dum convention held on September 1, 1973 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

h: voiceless glottal fricative (expressed somewhat more strongly than in English h)

a: low central spread vowel (as in Spanish)

d: voiced dental stop

o: mid-back rounded vowel (as in Spanish)

n: voiced dental nasal

For a complete Khokarsa series checklist, see here.

The Pulp Super-Fan on the Khokarsa series

DAW Books edition, 1974 (Art by Krenkel)

Michael R. Brown has posted a comprehensive overview of the Khokarsa series over at The Pulp Super-Fan that I highly recommend. Check it out here.

On a related note, I recently noticed that prices of used copies of Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa have been quickly climbing. As I type this, the cheapest copies you’ll find on Amazon Marketplace are $99.99 and $100.57 for new and used copies respectively. For those who were never able to purchase a copy, I will point out that the first volume in the novel trilogy, Hadon of Ancient Opar, is in still print and readily available in an affordable paperback edition, as well as an ebook edition. Further, although the signed limited edition has long since sold out, my novella Exiles of Kho has recently been released in an ebook edition from Meteor House. This latter is a tale set eight hundred years before Hadon of Ancient Opar, and features the priestess-heroine Lupeoth as she sets out along the shores of ancient Khokarsa’s southern sea on a quest decreed by the oracle, where she encounters the mysterious Sahhindar, the Gray-Eyed Archer God of her people. For a complete Khokarsa series checklist with links where to purchase each installment, see here.

So will there ever be a trade or ebook reprint of Gods of Opar, or individual trade or ebook editions of Flight to Opar and The Song of Kwasin? I don’t as of yet know, but I certainly hope so and will do my best within my abilities to make it happen. The high prices for used editions of Gods of Opar certainly only makes the case for a trade reprint, I would think. Who knows? In the meantime, I can say that things are starting to budge in relation to new Khokarsa projects, which is something that excites me to no end. What form these will take is being hammered out now, and I will post details as soon as I am able.

EXILES OF KHO: Kindle edition now available!

Exiles of KhoI’m pleased to announce that my long-out-of-print novella Exiles of Kho has just been released in a Kindle ebook edition. The tale is part of Philip José Farmer’s Khokarsa cycle, and is set eight hundred years before Hadon of Ancient Opar.

Here’s the publisher’s synopsis of Exiles of Kho:

Hundreds of years before the hero Hadon sailed forth from his shining city of gold and jewels upon his legendary adventures, the heroine-priestess Lupoeth set out upon the decree of the oracle to discover a new land upon the untamed shores of ancient Africa’s southern sea. But Lupoeth finds herself little prepared for the trials ahead, as well as those that follow upon her heels—for the jealous queen who wants her rival banished has appointed a worshiper of the sun god with a criminal past as the expedition’s priest, hoping to undermine the mission and seal its doom.

Now, lost in the deep jungle, Lupoeth must fight to keep her ill-equipped band of followers alive in the face of deadly beasts, savage Neanderthals, and conspiring enemies. Soon she finds the most accursed deity of her people’s faith, exiled from the empire by the Great Goddess Kho Herself, may be her only ally in this wild land. But Sahhindar, the god of Time and bronze, has a mysterious agenda of his own—one that Lupoeth fears might spell doom not only for her expedition, but for the entire world…

Exiles of Kho is now available in the Kindle store.

SFcrowsnest on GODS OF OPAR

Sven Scheurer has reviewed Gods of Opar: Tales of Lost Khokarsa over at SFcrowsnest. Here’s a snippet:

Gods Of Opar: Tales Of Lost Khokarsa’ is pulp fantasy in the best sense of the words. A fast-paced entertaining adventure literature in the tradition of Edgar Rice Burroughs and Henry Rider Haggard. Christopher Paul Carey was obviously the right choice for finishing Farmer’s outline and writing the third novel, at least I wouldn’t have noticed the change in authors. The cycles’ African setting distinguishes it from its more traditional northern European brethren. This exotic ambience combined with vivid descriptions of the localities, people and beasts make the novels interesting and fun to read. Despite two of the books being written over thirty years ago, they actually show no sign of their age. A must read for every fan of pulp literature and for all readers interested in fantasy with a slight twist.

Read the complete review here.